Q&A: BT's Gary Bruce on the Cloud Service Broker Catalyst

Posted: May 13th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Behind the Scenes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Got your head in the cloud?  There will certainly be a lot of discussion around the challenges and opportunities cloud services present next week at Management World 2010 in Nice.  For conference attendees wanting to experience key cloud management concepts, and forward-looking collaborations among communications service providers (CSPs), technology suppliers and enterprise customers, Forumville is a must!

Gary Bruce, Catalyst lead and project champion at BT Innovate & Design, answers a couple of questions about the Cloud Service Broker Catalyst (CSB), which will demonstrate a trusted, governed cloud management platform, to simplify the delivery of complex, cloud services to enterprise customers.

Q: How is the CSB Catalyst addressing the barriers to cloud adoption for enterprise customers?

A: Although cloud services offer many attractive benefits, enterprises are naturally concerned about losing control over IT governance.  Issues, such as maintaining application performance, delivering adequate security, preventing runaway costs and complying with regional or sector regulations, create significant barriers for cloud adoption.

The CSB Catalyst project starts to address these issues by developing a trusted interface between the enterprise and cloud service environments. This facilitates a secure, highly performing cloud-based environment for enterprise activity that operates in accordance with each organization’s own governance rules.

Using the CSB Catalyst, enterprises can benefit from cloud models, like pay-as-you-go, ‘OPEX not CAPEX’, and automatic scaling on demand, while retaining control and avoiding lock-in with any single underlying cloud platform.  The CSB also benefits cloud service providers by enabling them to offer services with transparent governance, and providing levels of control and assurance which would otherwise be difficult and costly to achieve.

Q: What will the demonstration scenario on display in Forumville entail?

A: The CSB Catalyst is acting on some of the primary requirements from TM Forum’s Enterprise Cloud Buyers Council, and explores the use of TM Forum standards to facilitate the cloud service broker function.  In particular, the CSB Catalyst employs the Product and Service Assembly (PSA) standard to facilitate automated interworking between each of the catalyst’s collaborators with respect to cloud service assembly and deployment.

The CSB Catalyst demonstration in Forumville will highlight:

  • Bringing a cloud product, including customer service level agreements, quickly and easily to market through the use of PSA catalogs to manage the service components and product lifecycle;
  • Fulfilling a customer order to meet both functionality requirements, and those for application performance, security, cost control and compliance, to the point of billing for the enabled product;
  • Responding to service quality challenges, for example, the dynamic creation of new capacity as a result of dips in application performance due to increased demand; and
  • Making status, activities, events and responses within the cloud service environment transparent and evident to both cloud service brokers and enterprise customers.

Q: How will the project takeaways help BT in the real world as a buyer and seller of complex cloud services?

A: Through the CSB Catalyst, BT hopes to make the provisioning of cloud services more easily accessible and viable for enterprises, and enable buyers to capitalize on the benefits of complex cloud services, while having the control they need over IT governance.

The initiative can also help cloud service brokers improve their customers’ experiences, by providing the best available resources at any given time, reducing service delivery bottlenecks and minimizing the effects of resource contention.

We hope that the Catalyst will encourage the adoption of cloud services, and open up new revenue opportunities for operators and cloud service providers.

To learn more about the CSB Catalyst, which also involves Comptel, Infonova, OpenNMS Group and Square Hoop, head over to Level 3 in the Agora 3 Mezzanine during the following hours:

Tuesday, May 18 from 12:30 – 19:00

Wednesday, May 19 from 10:00 – 19:00

Thursday, May 20 from 10:00 – 14:30